In the wake of recent catastrophes, including Superstorm Sandy, insurance has never been so relevant or necessary. And corporate insurance has never been more important to the health of British and global businesses. The business environment in 2013 is unlikely to improve markedly and finance directors and risk managers may come under renewed pressure to cut back on their insurance programmes rather than more sensibly reinforcing them.
Yet the insurance market is a sophisticated and mature business – an essential spoke in the wheels of the global economy in fact. Some might say, and I am stealing from someone else’s advertising campaign, that insurance gives businesses wings. Without insurance, the first ships would never have taken the risks they did 300 years ago to make it to the New World. What is certain is that a world without insurance would look very different today.
Let’s take Sandy as an example: it is still very early in the damage assessment process to have a clear picture of the impact on the insurance markets. The estimate from Eqecat and informal estimates from around the market put insured losses at $10 billion to $20 billion and economic losses of $30 billion to $50 billion in total. But the insurance business is taking it all in its stride, organizations such as Lloyd’s will pay all valid claims as they did with the San Francisco earthquake all those years ago.
As someone who has been reading the recent Geneva Association campaign with some interest, my mind has been well and truly boggled by some of the statistics about the size of the global insurance business and the positive role our industry plays in getting business back on their feet when things go wrong. There is a reason why the global insurance is so big, it’s because we’re good at what we do. So at Lockton we thought it would be fun to capture it all in a picture or, dread word, “organogram“. Enjoy!